You'd Never Know You're Completely Surrounded By Garbage In This Gorgeous House

"To be a changemaker, you must start with yourself."

While we might make excuses for the amount of trash we produce as individuals, one company's proving you can live — quite literally — in a trash-free space.

Miniwiz is a company that designs products and technologies that have little or no carbon footprint. According to its website, its mission is to "address the great disparity between sustainability, recycling and eco-consciousness and the bleak market reality around its lack of financially feasible application." 

To show how they are doing this, they've created an impressive office and gallery space entirely out of trash. Sammie Tsou, the marketing manager at Miniwiz, tells A Plus that the 4,300-square-foot shared space in Milan is appropriately named the "House of Trash" (HOT), and is made mostly from trash collected locally. 

The trash is then transformed through Miniwiz's upcycling technology and remanufactured in such a way so that the materials can continue to be recycled. The HOT surrounds creative professionals with trash to prove that "we have no more excuses to design and manufacture anything where the material is not collected from trash ... using the least amount of carbon footprint, least amount of toxicity," Tsou explains. Rooms include a kitchen, a bedroom, and a living room. 

Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz

"For the first time, we feel like we have mastered our craft to a certain extent, that we are now becoming valuable to the movement of making our society sustainable and circular," Tsou says, adding that they are looking to expand their HOT locations to New York City and Singapore. 

Every material inside the HOT — from the furniture, to the lights, to the glassware — is made of trash. Cushions were made from post-consumer recycled plastic bottles, the coffee table was made from recycled Starbucks plastic cups, recycled sweaters, shoe soles, and smartphone screens were transformed into a carpet, side table, and vase, respectively. The legs of a bench were made from recycled food packaging from France, and the seat of the bench was made from recycled food bottles from Germany. 

Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz

"We want to drive change that matters," Tsou told A Plus in response to why it's so important Miniwiz set an example with HOT. "To us, the environment is the only thing that matters because it is all about survival ... Every designer wants to create something new, to make an impact on the design world with their fancy shapes and unique materials. However, this unconscious 'design process' misses the point of what great design has to be. Great design must inspire future design and solve real societal problems; not create more disposable products that damage our environment. Designers and engineers must collaborate to capture this once in a lifetime opportunity to transform an abundant growing supply of trash in our society into sustainable, sexy, desirable products [and] buildings of the future." 

Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz

"To be a changemaker, you must start with yourself. From the purchasing decision you make, to the food you eat, to the office and house you work and live in ... By making more conscious carbon footprint and toxicity-based consumer decisions when renovating spaces or buying seasonal fashion products, these consumer decisions will send strong signals for the industries to change quickly. Please reconsider your spaces!" Tsou says. 

You can check out more photos from inside the House of Trash below:

Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz
Photo courtesy of Miniwiz

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